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The authors present an I/O architecture, called Swift, that addresses the problem of data-rate mismatches between the requirements of an application, the maximum data-rate of the storage devices, and the data-rate of the interconnection medium. The goal of Swift is to support integrated continuous multimedia in general purpose distributed systems. In installations with a high-speed interconnection medium, Swift will provide high data-rate transfers by using multiple slower storage devices in parallel. The data-rates obtained with this approach scale well when using multiple storage devices and multiple interconnections. Swift has the exibility to use any appropriate storage technology, including disk arrays. The ability to adapt to technological advances will allow Swift to provide for ever increasing I/O demands.
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